Day 112 – Deli Blazing
The trash pandas did not return for the remainder of the evening as far as I’m aware. My puffy saved the day again in the form of a makeshift eye mask. It allowed me to get a few more winks in that morning. Breakfast again was consumed tent side (inside to be exact, mosquitoes are still an omnipresent danger).
I was packed up and hiking by 8AM, out before the Rabbit even! The first 5 miles went fairly quickly. The trail is once again resembling an actual trail (you know the kind where dirt outnumbers the rocks). The hills the last few days have continued but they are enjoyable hills to hike. The challenge and joy of cresting a good hill is unmatched.
I passed by a phone booth in the middle of the trail. It’s called the “telephone of the wind” and is a replica of its original in Japan. The purpose is to leave a message to communicate with those you grieve for. There is a similar bank of telephones at a place in San Antonio called “Hopscotch.” I didn’t leave a message but I said a little prayer for my grandmother who passed away last year.
By 10AM we had arrived at Canopus Lake Beach. During the day they have a concessions stand that sells the most amazing bacon cheeseburgers on a pretzel bun you’ve ever had. I had 2! They also have bathrooms with showers. The showers had one temperature and that temperature was cold. Lucky for me I enjoy a cold shower every now and again.
I’ve had a few comments on here of late remarking that eating at a restaurant or sleeping in a bed on trail is not “grueling” enough for them. Hiking 2198 miles is grueling enough, so anything outside of hiking all those miles is fair game to me. Adrienne Hall from her book, A Journey North, put it best when she said:
There really is no correct way to hike the trail, and anyone who insists that there is, ought not to worry so much about other people’s experiences. Hikers need to hike the trail that’s right for them…
We did 10 more miles and stopped at Corrado Pizzeria and Deli. It’s just off trail and they let you camp in the green space behind the building. Rabbit and I split a plate of wings and I also had a calzone and a slice of pistachio cake.
Hydration packets, candy/protein bars and ramen only go so far on the trail. Nearly every hiker lives for days like these, evident by the 7 other tents posted up behind the deli as I write this. Also this far into a thru-hike, your body needs the calories and if we’re quite frank about it, you’ve earned it!
Trolls are gonna troll. I’m out here putting in the work and am not a faceless screen-name behind a computer. So I’ll continue to “Deli Blaze” all the way up to fucking Maine if I want to. If you disagree with my methods, hike your own hike (if you dare).
Stow away in my pack for day 113 of the Appalachian Trail.
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